tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC June 27, 2012 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT
i don't think so. thanks so much for watching us at this new hour of 4:00. it has been a bit after time shift but we appreciate it. chris matthews is here right now with "hardball." stay tuned. fast, furious and fiction. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start with a shocker. you know the story of thousand the u.s. government agents allowed guns to go to the cartel. the nra and entire american right? well, according to a new report from "fortune" magazine, not the nation or "the new york times," "fortune," it didn't happen. the u.s. government never used a tactic of ledding the guns reach the bad guys in mexico.
which raises the bigger question, then why is eric holder and the obama administration failed to kill the story? didn't they learn from the charges against john kerry if you don't knock down a story, it knocks you down. our guests tonight are matt miller and msnbc political analyst david korn. help me out here. it is great to have you on tonight. how did i and so many of our viewers and so many people in the country believe for the last 18 months that the united states government was so risk-prone that they sent guns allowed guns to fall into the hands of the bad guys in mexico, cartel people, and as a tactic that somehow tracked them down. according to "fortune," having interviewed a bunch of agents at atf, that never happened. >> i think there are two things. first, the department of justice is trying to conduct its investigation in a responsible manner in the way the departments do. they interview the people and it
takes a long time. a.g. appointed the -- asked the inspector general to start investigating this in february of last year. that is still ongoing. >> last year. >> february of last year. still ongoing. >> does eric holder know there is an election being held and this is one of the issues? >> department of justice does not take those things into consideration. for better or worse. what happens is the inspector general's investigating and that takes time. the other thing is -- >> i don't like that answer. okay? >> i can tell. >> 18 months of -- messing around. "fortune" magazine blockbuster says darrell issa's investigation is built on lies. it reads -- there's a fundamental misconception at the heart of the fast and furious scandal. nobody disputes that suspected straw purchases under surveillance by the atf bought guns and eventually fell into criminal hands. issa and others charge that the atf intentionally allowed guns to walk, to walk, operational tactic. five law enforcement agents directly involved in the fast
and furious effort, tell "fortune" the atf had no such tactic and insist they never purposefully allowed guns to be illegally trafficked. the opposite. they say they seized weapons wherever they could and were ham strung by weak laws which stymied them at every turn. part of the malarky about this. second amendment fanatics out there say you can't stop trafficking and even semiautomatic weapons going drug dealers. you can't do it. let me get your take on this. how did we believe for 18 months the atf was stupid enough to go to the drug dealers? >> democrats run to the hills when gun -- when issues of -- involving guns come into the political debate. also, atf is a dysfunctional agency. i don't say it the way issa says it. it is always the target of conservative attacks. this agency, which is supposed to do something about guns going into mexico, is hampered by budgetary restrictions, placed on it by republicans who are
doing the bidding of ra which hates this agency. so this is the only law enforcement age soy the books that's despised and targeted again and again by the right conservative republicans and thus throws everything out of kilter. you go after the atf, justice department does not how to respond. puts the white house on the defensive. we get lost in the -- >> let's get back to the focus here. did the united states government ever let guns move down into mexico and into the cartel and eventually allow people to get killed as a way of tracking those cartels? did they ever do that? >> yeah, they did. one of the things that came out -- >> they did allow them to dot it. >> the "fortune" magazine article is wrong. >> well, no. they didn't -- appears on -- in the "fortune" magazine article, it didn't happen in fast and furious. happened in several other operations. one that started under the bush administration. wide receiver that darrell issa never talks about. and then happened another smaller operation.
>> but it didn't happen under the watch of holder. >> happened in a smaller operation. i don't know if we know if the guns made it to mexico or not. will is one case mentioned in the story where guns were allowed to be tracked bay whistle blower that complained about guns. dodson. >> clarify this to me. no one charged the united states government went out and bought guns and gave them to the straw buyers and allowed them to go into mexico, did they? did anybody charge that? >> issa has. >> you say we paid for the guns? >> his -- charges shifted many times. many of the republicans on the hill said that we have paid for the guns or u.s. taxpayers were -- funds were used. other times said that they let all the guns walk. you have to remember where this comes from. this is -- conspiracy theory on the right that the administration did this intentionally to drum up support for gun control. >> that's crazy. >> of course it is. people believe it. >> i like to get the facts first, analis and then the
opinion. did the united states government in fast and furious, the campaign being held run by this administration, did they allow guns to go into mexico and could have been used to kill people? >> according to "fortune" magazine piece, no. the inspector general has not yet finished the report p.m. >> when do you think the roar will be finished? >> the next few month. >> has been going on since 2011. okay. you think that's okay? >> i think that's how long it takes to do the reports. if you look at -- >> two seconds to make a charge and year and a half -- >> but they -- >> darrell issa knows that. and he has been going after the administration at -- every which way he can. the thing is he's mad -- >> how about innocent until proven guilty? we don't know that's true. allow it to look like it might be true. why didn't they just deny it. >> they did early. then they found -- what happened is they found conflicting allegationses. some people in the atf that said
it happened and others that didn't. >> some people in the atf and united states government under this administration, under its campaign of fast and furious, they were sending guns into mexico hoping to somehow trap -- by the way -- i don't know how that traps anybody. illegal to buy the guns in this country. nra and darrell issa are working togethering on this and say the fast and furious operation is a white house conspiracy to crack down on gun rights here in the u.s. here is issa on fox in december. let's listen. >> very clearly, they made a crisis and they are using this crisis as somehow to take away or limit people's second amendment rights. >> absolutely pandering there. crazy pandering. conspiracy theory cooked up by issa and nra so far-fetched colbert, the insanity with this explanation. let's listen. >> very clearly, they made a crisis and they are using this crisis to somehow take away or limit people's second amendment rights. >> yes. very clearly.
obama started this gun tracking program in 2006 when he h hypnotized george bush and had holder to order the justice department to order the atf to order gun shops to sell guns to mexican drug cartels and then lose track of them. panicking americans to get support the draconian gun control measures that obama has never introduced. >> can't say it bet are myself. house speaker boehner won't support this conspiracy nut case stuff. he was asked for evidence that fast and furious was all a plot to create a gun control initiative here in the states. let's listen. >> i have never indicated that that was the case. i don't know whether that's the case because we don't have the documents. >> you know, you are laughing because you think it is funny. here is a guy -- sane conservative, having to deal with people who are not. >> at the same time he won't shoot it down. he says i don't know --
>> he will be defeated if he does. >> of course. the big issue here is that they say that they are upset that the u.s. government sent guns to mexico. actually, the problem was there are lots of guns going to mexico. this isn't a ginned up crisis. it is a tremendous crisis. tens of thousands of guns a year, not hundreds of thousands, are flowing from the united states to mexico, arming the drug cartels there and killing sometimes americans in the border regions but it is a tremendous -- it is legal because the republicans and nra prevent any laws or regulations from going to -- >> let me explain this. what i have been able to read from the "fortune" piece, you can go to phoenix right now. there are over 800 gun shops that legally sell semiautomatic guns down there. any kid can walk into the store and buy 20 of them. walk down the street and sell them to somebody going to mexico working important the cartel. all legal. if you held the gun for five
minutes you are allowed to own it and then sell it five minutes later, all legally. go right down to the cartel. >> that's right when the administration proposed just -- to illustrate how crazy things have gotten, when they proposed that just the sale of those guns be tracked, someone went in and bought multiple assault rifles -- >> discount. >> that's right. the -- nr app went crazy about it. house republicans went crazy about it and voted to block it. then didn't go anywhere in the senate. just the tracking of that was opposed. >> final point. not only is the story not true but apparently fictional that we impact, encouraging guns to go down so we can track them. this conspiracy theory that was all an attempt by the establishment, bad guys in washington, to track down your guns at home, where you have a semiautomatic. the politics of this. it is on display now. david, you start on this. looks like 30-plus democrats in the house of representatives will now vote for a criminal charge of criminal contempt of congress against the attorney general and not because they believe in the merits of the case. because the nra listed this as
one of those votes that decides whether you are pro or against guns. >> yeah. as you know, there are a bunch of democrats who support gun rights, more importantly, are scared of the nra back in -- >> west virginia, utah. >> for good reason. here comes the nra saying that this isn't a gun rights issue but they are going to make it a gun right issue so that democrats are going to be put in a box and it is going to give some form of bipartisan cover so tomorrow darrell issa will be -- bipartisan effort against eric holder. >> there are a lot of democrats in the nra. this is a partisan move. this is to help the republicans. not good about the gun owners. i'm saying it to the nra. you are working for the republicans now and you are not supposed to do that. thank you, matt miller. >> thank you. >> complicated case here. tell them to move their asses over there. three strikes and you are out. strike one was the supreme court stopping the 2000 recount in there. strike two was citizens united that said corporate fat cats can
spend all they want on political campaigns. can strike three be killing the historic obama health care bill? that's coming up tomorrow. obama campaign smells blood on bain. they are calling romney the outsourcer in chief. one thing for sure, romney hates it. what's more interesting, what more entertaining than watching a birther run for congress? two of them running against each other. up next, remembering nora ephron who wrote the screen play of our lives and knew more about how we lived than most politicians will ever know. rob reiner will join us. this is "hardball," the place for politics. in florida we had more suntans... in alabama we had more beautiful blooms... in mississippi we had more good times... in louisiana we had more fun on the water. last season we broke all kinds of records on the gulf. this year we are out to do even better... and now is a great time to start. our beatches are even more relaxing... the fishing's great.
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welcome back to "hardball." nora ephron was the woman that wrote hit movies including "you've got mail" and "sleepless in seattle." finding hume for love in the lives of regular people. nora passed away last night after battling leukemia. she left behind classic lines and terrific moments in movies like this one. "when harry met sal write." >> just that all men are sure it never happened to them and women at one time or another have done it before. >> you don't think i can tell the difference? >> yes! yes! yes! oh! oh! oh! oh, god!
oh. >> i'll have what she's having. >> here to remember, rob reiner. directed that movie "when harry met sally." with me is joan walsh who called me or e-mailed me at dawn today. she wanted to talk about this, my buddy. i know why you did. rob, it is great to have you on, even on this side. any night to have you. you directed that film. i have to tell you, i don't think there are many movies i can think of -- maybe besides "casablanca" people talk about all the time as having gotten them. connected with them. >> yeah. no. i mean, it is -- it was so sad. i mean, i -- i had a really hard night last night. i was -- hard for me to sleep. so shocking for me to find out what happened to nora. but she, you know, she touched us all. i mean, you know, she made all of our lives richer and i'm
going to miss her terribly. i mean, i will miss the times i spent, you know, having dinners with her and at her house. and with her and nick and -- it is -- really, really sad. i mean, she really brought a lot of joy to everybody who she touched. not just through her films. if you had the fortune to have dinner with her, i mean, it was always the best. and just like in the film "when harry met sally," she had a way of -- made you eat what she wanted you on have. if you were at a restaurant she made you order. you order this. have you this. she just basically orchestrated your life for you. it was -- she was such a -- she was so much fun. >> that was your mom that said i will have what she's having, right? >> that's my mother, yeah, that's my mother. that scene -- that scene was -- nora's idea. the idea of the woman faking an orgasm which she said -- i said nora, i need something where there's going to be something that men don't know about women. she said, well, you know, most
women faked an orgasm at one time or another. i said no, that's not possible. and so we did a little survey around the office and found out that that was true. and so that became the basis of that scene. that last line there, that's my mother delivering the last line which is considered now one of the great lines in american film. >> mrs. carl reiner, who can forget sally's incredible ordering skills. let's watch it. >> hi. what can i get you? >> i will have the number three. >> i would like the chef's salad with the oil and vinegar on the side and apple pie ala mode. >> i would like the pie heated. i would like the ice cream on the side. strawberries. whip cream if it is real. out of the can. if not, nothing. >> not the pie.
>> no, i will have the pie. heated. what? >> i don't know. i worked at restaurants. i don't want her as a client. anyway, joan, your thoughts about this because i'm thinking about single women, divorced people, people who are still dating and later years people who have had memories that never go away in this area of male-female relationors whatever these days. this is male-female we are talking about. your thoughts? >> right. she was -- brilliant about it, chris. she was brilliant about it and really brought a fell nus sensibility to screwball comedy. she gave us female characters with who with rich complexity, maddening and annoying and confused and the men are confused, too. we are equals in this realm in nora's movie, equally crazy sometimes. and i think she brought a lot of comfort to women. women and men. you can be traveling, all of us traveling. i found myself in a -- in a strange hotel and there is
"sleepless in seattle." there is "you've got mail" or "when harry met sal write." soundtrack to our lives. it is comforting. you remember it. you remember them as funny and they are funnier the second or third or fourth time you see them. you know, it is a tremendous loss important women. frankly. >> i think that she was more connected to us than most politicians. 1998 "you've got mail." tom hanks and meg ryan. she met the guy. let's watch. >> kathleen kelly. hello. this is a coincidence. would you mind if i sat down? >> yes, yes, i would, actually. i'm expecting someone. thanks. >> "pride & prejudice." i bet you read that book every year. i bet you just love that mr. darcy and sentiment beats wildly to the thought that he and -- whatever her name is, truly, honestly going to end up
together. >> can i get you something? >> no, no, he's not staying. >> decaf. >> no, no. you are not staying. >> you know, this is about the -- this is for the even younger than me. younger than you, rob. this is people who are dating over e-mail. and getting to know each other. she finds out that the guy she hates is the guy she loves because she hates him in literal life and loves him in e-mail and meets him and decides ultimately after two hours she does like this guy. >> yeah. she had a wonderful way of observation. she just was the -- greatest observer of this awkward dance that men and women do with each other. she had -- she was able to tap into herself. she was able to observe others and she expressed, as join points out, for all of us, what we all went through. that's why she was so good. she made us see ourselves in
ways that we knew were exactly true and she had the wonderful curvy way of expressing it. >> you know, i was thinking, joan, you know, about connection. and here we are watching pictures of her with alt these people. i want to you make one final thought. i want on show a scene from "sleepless in seattle" which -- certainly got to be -- everybody else that watched. i have a comment about this at the end of the show tonight about the timelessness of these stories, how cary grant and deborah carr can have the same scene that tom hanks has 50 years later with mg r er witr w nothing changed. it is as fresh in the morning and will prove it again in a minimum. here is your final eulogy. why is a single woman, woman of great brains and great poise and beauty, like yourself in fact, yourself, why is -- why is this writer so important we just lost? nora ephron. >> because i think she really did show us who we are and also reassure us it all turns out well in the end.
there's always a happy ending. and she lets you embrace all of your own neuroses and inconsistencies and reassures women that they are beautiful the way they are. world is complicated. and that they can have fun. she made feminism fun. women -- we can care about equal pay and also care about our love lives. we are complex people. i think she really brought that out into american culture in a way that i don't think i had seen before. >>okay. thank you. rob rieiner, my friend. good luck with your political work this year. joan walsh. we will be right back. >> it is you. >> it is me. >> i saw you in the street. >> are you annie? >> yes. >> we better go.
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back to how many. we are in the side show. mitt romney has been racking up facebook fans the past month. is the uptick in social media all important the best? you asked jimmy fallon. >> let's take a look at the pros and cons of mitt romney being on facebook. pro, change his status every five minutes. con, mostly on his side of
political views. facebook has a like button. con, romney's facebook page has oh, you like that? i like that, too. hopping in the car for a road trip. his dog's latest facebook status is noooooo! >> he is still way behind, 2 million fans for romney on facebook. the supreme couimmigration state they detain or arrest if they have a reasonable suspicion they are in the country illegally. the illinois congressman unleashed on that remaining portion today with props in tow. >> justin bieber and celina gomez, a happy couple? i'm sure justin helped gomez learn all about american customs and feel more at home in her
adopted country. oh, wait a minute. i'm sorry. because i'm not a trained eed arizona official. i got that backwards. miss gomez of texas has helped mr. bieber of canada learn about his adopted country. justin, when you perform in phoenix, remember to bring your papers. >> pretty smart move there by gutierrez. he was criticized when jan brewer calls the heart of the law. here is a question. what's worse than having a birther running for congress? how about would birthers running against each other. that's what's happening in north carolina, a republican primary. here is one of the candidates. mark meadows at a tea party rally earlier this month. >> what we are going to do is take back our country 2012 is the time that we are going to send mr. obama home to kenya or wherever it is. we are going to do. >> it what a loser. doesn't end there. here's meadows' opponent, vance
patterson. responding to a question on the president's citizenship days after that rally. >> i know you are concerned and i'm concerned, too. i hate the thought it would be led by somebody who is not an american. there's something there that's not right. yes, he's produced a birth certificate. it is not the one that i have got. most of news the room have as far as proving our origin. >> i see it as if we do our job from a grassroots standpoint, we won't have to worry about it. you know what? we will send him back home to kenya or wherever it is. you know. we will send him back home. >> dancing pander bears. when asked the comments during roll call yesterday, meadows said i think it is a mon issue. obviously bringing it back is probably a poor choice of words on my part. more than anything else. i believe he's an american citizen and i believe that in my district, he is going to lose
overwhelmingly. i don't know when what it means. opponent patterson was also in the backpacking or backing up mood there on the birther remark. standard procedure, you suppose, by now. throw it out there for the yahoos and pull it back after someone with a pen and notebook shows up. disgraceful. up next, supreme court taking up health care in the most conservative -- most conservative since the 1930s. are these justices really out there to dismantle president obama's signature policy achievement? are they going to do it or not? let's find out tomorrow. we will talk about it tonight. what we can look for tomorrow. a party? [ music plays, record skips ] hi, i'm new ensure clear. clear, huh? my nutritional standards are high. i'm not juice or fancy water, i'm different. i've got nine grams of protein.
twist my lid. that's three times more than me! twenty-one vitamins and minerals and zero fat! hmmm. you'll bring a lot to the party. [ all ] yay! [ female announcer ] new ensure clear. nine grams protein. zero fat. twenty-one vitamins and minerals. in blueberry/pomegranate and peach. refreshing nutrition in charge! thin coffee shops. people who i thave been out of work. you can tell it wears on them. narrator: he's fought to pull us out of economic crisis for three years. and he still is. president obama's plan keeps taxes down for the middle class, invests in education and asks the wealthy to pay their fair share. mitt romney and his billionaire allies can spend milions to distort the president's words. but they're not interested in rebuilding the middle class. he is. i'm barack obama and i
shares of arena pharmaceuticals surged nearly 30% after the fda approved the company's obesity drug. on the economic front orders for big ticket items jumped stronger than expected. 1.1% in may. pending home sales rose 5.9% last month. the gain was larger than economists expected. that's it from cnbc. first in business worldwide. now back to "hardball." welcome back to "hardball." tomorrow will be a dramatic day in washington and across the country when the supreme court releases its decision on the fate of the president's signature legislative achievement. affordable care act. will the justice uphold it? will they throw it out? will they gut it by taking away key provisions the individual mandate? tomorrow's decemberlition have major implications for millions
of americans and they could be a turn point. we all know that in this presidential election. also a milestone for chief justice job ron efforts. presides over a partisan court. a court that's moved right certainly in recent years. how much has that -- will that be weighing on him when he considers this case? lawrence tribe has the unique distinction of being able to say he taught both president obama and chief justice roberts. both were students of his at harvard law. robert klein, msnbc policy analyst. let me ask you to go at this from separate ways. from the entirely legal question -- justy rob rts, what are thinks concerns do you believe, professor tribe? if he were to be part of a -- 5-4 striking down of this law. >> i you this, chris, it would concern him as it would any good chief justice that the court
would appear to be very partisan and politically divided. even if all of the justices in very good faith voted their constitutional principles, couldn't blame the country for looking at that. especially aftersy sense united and bush v. gore. in saying that this is a more political than legal institution. he would want very much to avoid that because that would undermine the well spring of trust that the court commands. the court that's already less trusted than it was just a few years ago. i think that would bother him. >> i want -- up haven't written about this particularly but let's think about three strikes and you are out in the sense of baseball or the law. here is the court that base you cannily interrupted the recount in florida in 2000. i think the best thing we ever got to cover but blew the whistle and said no more counting. it will be bush. and then, of course, brought citizens united and i am proved basically unlimited cash. basically overruling all the reforms of watergate.
big, fat money now dominates politics. thanks to this conservative court. if they now do it again, do you think it is going to bring into real question their moral and legal authority in this country? >> i think it will be an -- in this way in particular. these aren't just big controversial rulings. what you named here and particularly citizens united and bush v. gore are major rulings in the same direction towards the same party in which the court helped elect republicans. right? bush vfshg gore was decision, decision they have never -- never pled the reasoning to another case. in which they clearly helped tilt the election to george w. bush. people are going to argue which way the round would have gone in florida. but it wasn't allowed to proceed. citizens united, very clear partisan implications where we are seeing this year may be a significant reason that barack obama could lose re-election and what's dangerous about this and the -- health care, of course which would certainly harm obama if it is overturned, what's dangerous about this, one thing for the court to be able to have this kind of loss around the constitution and for people to
say oh it is a fair player and bee have to abide by that. when they can self-perpetuate ideology on the court by electing people that put into office other people who, you know, believe in these things and that court will in turn help elect those people again, that makes the court partisan player and the way i think people will find ill-legitimate. >> back in the nixon administration, professor tribe, when he was holding in there -- holding on, i should say, proposed an employer mandate. argument even tougher. are you going to hire somebody, give them health care. no one talked about the constitutionality of that proposal at the time. interest didn't seem to be vaguely unconstitutional. >> well, a lot has changed in the years since. there are more justices now who have a very strong belief in states rights and more skeptical about national legislative power. my own sense, all show i don't want to go out too long a limb, my own sense is that six of the
justices of -- current court are likely to vote to uphold this mandate and vote to uphold expansion of medicaid. i would actually be more surprised if 2 court strikes it down than if it upholds it. i would expect the chief justice to write an opinion and -- perhaps saying that the mandate isn't really mandate at all. but a choice people have. and either to purchase health insurance or to paw more taxes so that there isn't as much prewriting. it is, after all, republican idea that they ended up with. and you actually expect the court to uphold the mandate so that the idea that this would be the third strike just may not come to pass. >> you know, one other concern here as you are a friend of mine, fell roman catholic said, he does want to be the second roger teny. a roman catholic that upheld the slave law before the civil war
and i will have n and was villainized. with full than mandate of the american people reflect medical the election of 2008, strike down something like that really does seem radical. my question to you is do you think he suffers that same fear either of those fears that he is just too radically conservative or he doesn't want to go down individually as the guy that struck this thing down? >> this is a -- it is a big move here. i think he takes it seriously. if you look at it from his perspective it looks different. he has a lot of conservative friends. the way it is pushing in this direction. doesn't want to be a huge betrayal to his side which universally believes he should strike down this mandate, one of their biggest in generations to limit the commerce clause. and significantly, and then -- i think it is important to say this while barack obama came in with -- significant majority of
2008, conservatives in the republicans that have done a good job making the bill unpopular, majority of people do think the bill is arguably unconstitutional. i think if he is looking for the idea he would have a certain amount of public support for this, or at least enough expectation without it no longer be seen as radical, i think there has been a good job laying the groundwork. i don't think people would be shocked the way it would create a heavy and counter revolution. >> are you a lawyer? >> i'm not. >> you should be. i think you should be on the court. really. you have a great mind. i love your comps. dead serious. we need more liberal minds like yours on the court. >> thank you. >> thank you. it was an honor to have you on. wishful thinking or brilliant or clairvoyance. the reason for the obama campaign just won't give up on those bain attacks because it is working. wait until you hear what this guy is yelling out. went to "the washington post" today to complain bit. that's romney. he is crying at the door of newspapers he won't even read. [ male announcer ] wouldn't it be cool
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clairvoyance. newspapers he won't even read. claire mccass kel is answering questions about skipping the convention. here is what he said h to say on "morning joe." >> you have to say to people at home which is more important going to a place with a bunch of party honchos and cocktail parties or being at home and talking to them.
this will be hot. we are back. obama campaign's bain attack against mitt romney got a big boost on friday when "the washington post" reported that bain capital was a pioneer investing in firms specializing in outsourcing the american jobs. sending them overseas. latest nbc news "wall street journal" poll shows the attacks seem to be working. having their effect.
nationally, 23% say they feel bad or good rather about romney's experience. 28% of five more say they are down on it. in swing states, catch these numbers with the attack ads have been running. by the obama people. just 18% are positive about romney's business background. 38% are down it. negative on it. it has the romney campaign so concerned that it retracts it from "the washington post" this afternoon after a meeting with "the washington post," candidate himself or spokesman for the candidate said we are very confident in our reporting. the post is sticking to its story. howard fineman is an msnbc political analyst and director of the huffington post media group. you know, i -- these numbers you know, i -- these numbers basically tell me, cynthia, that